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SCIWAY News No. 42 – March 2007


Previous Issues of SCIWAY News


In This Issue

  1. Dynamic Duo Coming to a Town Near You
  2. Notable SC Websites
  3. New SC City Maps
  4. SC Photo of the Month
  5. Upcoming SC Festivals & Events
  6. What's in a Name? Two Surprises

1. Dynamic Duo Coming to a Town Near You

South Carolina is never short on providing its citizens with a bounty of wonderful places that inspire. Better yet, our state is full of people who recognize our good fortune and take the time to share their discoveries with the rest of us. That's a big part of the reason SCIway.net exists. We take pride in sharing SC websites created by such folks.

Enter a website devoted to SC's movie stars of the past. No, we're not talking about the people on the screen, but the screens themselves. We're talking about SC's rich history of single-screen movie theaters. It's hard to imagine now, but there was a time when little to no televisions were to be found and a computer was the kid down the street who could do long division in his head. The only way to watch movies and news reels was to march down to your local theater dressed in your best and take in the cinema.

The music was live and uniformed ushers were there to greet you and seat you as you were immersed in the splendor of Hollywood. And just like a movie, each SC theater had its own personality, its own story to tell.

Those stories have now found a home. SCMovieTheatres.com, starring John Coles and Mark Tiedje, is the place to re-live, or perhaps discover, the glory of old Palmetto State movie theaters and the silver-screened memories they inspired. John and Mark have been traveling throughout our state researching theaters and documenting movie memories, and they are also writing a book – South Carolina Movie Theatre Memories.

Recently, we caught up with these gumshoes at the wonderful Majestic Grill in Charleston to talk to them about their adventures. Click here to find out what they had to say.

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2. Notable SC Websites

Cancer Society of Greenville County

Friends of Hunting Island

Historic Abbeville County

Palmetto Center for Women - Columbia

Pavilion Nostalgia Park - Myrtle Beach

Reform SC DOT - site no longer exists

Saluda-Reedy Watershed Consortium - site no longer exists

SC Iraq and Afghanistan Fallen Heros | SC Faces of the Fallen - click SC on the map

SC Summer Camps - statewide directory

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3. New SC City Maps

In our ongoing effort to create simple, easy-to-use maps of South Carolina, we have now added city maps to our growing inventory. Here are the seven new city maps for you to use and enjoy:

These new maps incorporate many features not found elsewhere and have clear, easy-to-read info. Plus they're free and printable!

If you see something that needs to be changed or would like to add something we forgot, email us at news@sciway.net. We love comments.

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4. SC Photo of the Month


Of all the recent additions to the South Carolina Picture Project, we've really enjoyed the photos of the Upstate that Deborah Davis of Oconee County sent us.

March's SC Photo of the Month captures the tumultuous flow of the Middle Saluda River through Jones Gap State Park, located in Greenville County.

Thank you, Deborah!

—  Middle Saluda River  —

Click here to learn more about the SC Picture Project.

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5. Upcoming SC Festivals & Events


For a complete calendar of South Carolina festivals, conferences, and other events, visit http://www.sciway.net/calendar.html.

Battle of Charleston - March 23-25, Johns Island - page no longer exists

RenoFest Bluegrass Music Festival - March 23-25, Hartsville

Aiken Steeplechase - March 24 - page no longer exists

Victory at Fort Watson & Wildlife Expo - March 24-25, Summerton

SC Assistive Technology Expo - March 29, Columbia - page no longer exists

Flowertown Festival - March 30 - April 1, Summerville

Carolina Cup - March 31, Camden

Cooper River Bridge Run - March 31, Charleston

Columbia International Festival - March 31 - April 1

Family Circle Cup - April 7-15, Charleston

Monday after the Masters - April 9, Myrtle Beach

Verizon Heritage Golf Tournament - April 9-15, Hilton Head - 2011 renamed RBC Heritage Golf Tournament

Come-See-Me Festival - April 12-21, Rock Hill

World Grits Festival - April 13-15, Saint George

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6. What's in a Name? Two Surprises


Most South Carolinians know that our state was the first to secede from the Union and that we played no small role in the Civil War that followed. To this day, reminders of that conflict are easy to find just about anywhere you look.

Many of us also know that there was a lot of support for the Union in the foothills and mountains of the South ... and that some of the most extreme secessionists lived in the Lowcountry.

So it's easy to assume that two South Carolina place names – upcountry Union and lowcountry Secessionville – are related to the Civil War. But as it happens, both have earlier, more peaceful origins.

The Town of Union in South Carolina's piedmont was originally settled as Unionville, but that was back in 1791 – seventy years before the Confederacy was born. It wasn't named for the federal government but instead for an old log meeting house that was shared by Presbyterian, Episcopalian, and perhaps even Quaker congregations. The structure, built sometime between 1751 and 1755, was called Union Church in honor of its common purpose. This church was burned in the American Revolution, but its spirit is preserved today in the name of both the town and its surrounding county.

Far to the southeast sits a wonderfully breezy coastal village called Secessionville. Secessionville is located on James Island, and like Union, it got its name long before the Civil War.

In a letter written to Bishop Albert Thomas of Columbia in the mid-1900s, James Island planter William McLeod tells the story of Secessionville's origin:

"In the long ago the planters had to leave their plantations in the summer on account of what they called 'country fever,' which is known now as malaria. The place selected by the planters of James Island was that beautiful point, Fort Johnson (named for Colonial Governor Nathaniel Johnson). The road to the place (for horse and buggy) was long, hot, and of very heavy sand. There were about twenty-five or thirty families gathered there with quite a bit of social life among them. Most of the families were connected either by blood or marriage.

"After a long time, however, some of the people grew tired of the monotonous trip back and forth to their plantations and began looking around for a similar place near the water and away from the danger of country fever. They finally decided that a place called Stent's Point would suit; so several families built summer cottages there and moved in. Those who remained at Fort Johnson ridiculed them and bulldozed them that they were seceding from the fold. These pioneers answered the taunt by naming their place Secessionville. I don't know the date that this village was founded, but it was quite some time prior to South Carolina's secession."

We suspect there are lots of other South Carolina place names that have interesting and even surprising origins. If you know of one, please write us at news@sciway.net. Thanks!

Allan D. Charles, The Narrative History of Union County (Greenville, SC: A Press Printing Company, 1997).

Claude Henry Neuffer, Names in South Carolina, Volume 8 (The State Printing Company, 1961).

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© 2008 SCIway.net, LLC. "SCIWAY News"™ is written by the team at SCIWAY – with a lot of help from people throughout South Carolina. ISSN: 1527-3903.

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